Epic Games just announced that they’re going to be supporting competitive Fortnite. If you’ve been following the scene, you wouldn’t find this move a surprise.
Fortnite as popular. In fact, it’s popular AF to the point where NRL players are copying moves and kids are able to easily play via the mobile version. And, of course, some weirdos are making satirical “Ban Fortnite” petitions. Oh and there’s also that Infinity War cross-promo that happened too.
How will Epic Games be backing the competitions?
For the 2018-2019 season, Epic Games will be putting down some serious cash. They’re putting up US$100 million to be used for tournament prize pools.
In addition to finding prizes, Epic Games wants to see the comps focus on a couple of key areas:
- The joy of playing the game
- The joy of watching the game
The potential of competitive Fortnite
That’s all they’ve announced for now. However, we should expect more information soon.
Personally, from my observations of the Battle Royale scene, it was only a matter of time until competitive Fortnite became an official thing.
Fortnite’s primary competitor is PUBG. Unfortunately, what PUBG doesn’t have over Fortnite is its wider public exposure. Visually, Fortnite is also more accessible to a wider range of demographics.
There are a few ways Epic Games could go with Fornite Esports:
- Old school with a primary focus on PC competitions only
- Mix it up by running competitions across all platforms that Fortnite is available on
- Be the biggest champion of mixed and female teams in leagues
On the topic of mobile, I think Epic Games could be the company to bring mobile esports to the mainstream. The mobile esports scene is currently dominated by titles like Vainglory, Arena of Valor and Clash Royale. So far, these titles are only holding appeal in countries like China. I can only imagine the value of the partnerships and sponsorships that would come together if Fornite Mobile Esports was a thing.
Speaking of sponsorships and partnerships, the wide awareness of Fortnite and its appeal to a wider spread of demographics (especially younger demographics) are huge advantages. I really hope Epic Games stick with their goal of making the competitions more inclusive. It would benefit everybody — the game, the esports scene, and gaming in general.